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Available for the first time since its original publication more than fifty years ago, Christmas at Cold Comfort Farm is a charming collection whose. Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons; 28 editions; First published in ; Subjects: Family, Farm life, Fiction, Literature, OverDrive, Rural. Cold Comfort Farm. View PDF. book | World → Penguin. In Gibbons's classic tale a resourceful young heroine finds herself in the gloomy, overwrought .
Well, of course, modern novels might encourage her to think so. There was nothing written nowadays worth reading.
The book on her knee was called Cold Comfort Farm and had been written by a young woman who was said to be very clever and had won an important literary prize. But she couldn't get on with it at all. It was about life on a farm, but the girl obviously knew nothing about country life. To anyone who, like herself, had always lived in the country, the whole thing was too ridiculous and impossible for words. Mary Smiling: a widow, Flora's friend in London.
Charles Fairford: Flora's cousin in London, studying to become a parson. She has an unhealthy passion for her own son Seth.
Seth Starkadder: younger son of Amos and Judith. Handsome and over-sexed. Has a passion for the movies. Ada Doom: Judith's mother, a reclusive, miserly widow, owner of the farm, who constantly complains of having seen "something nasty in the woodshed" when she was a girl. Adam Lambsbreath: year-old farm hand, obsessed with his cows and with Elfine. Reuben Starkadder: Amos's heir, jealous of anyone who stands between him and his inheritance of the farm.
Meriam Beetle: hired girl, and mother of Seth's four children. Elfine: an intellectual, outdoor-loving girl of the Starkadder family, who is besotted with the local squire, Richard Hawk-Monitor of Hautcouture pronounced "Howchiker" Hall.
Mrs Beetle: cleaning lady, rather more sensible than the Starkadders. Mrs Murther: landlady of The Condemn'd Man public house. Mr Meyerburg whom Flora thinks of as "Mr Mybug" : a writer who pursues Flora and insists that she only refuses him because she is sexually repressed.
Claud Hart-Harris: urbane friend of Flora's whom she summons to accompany her, Seth and Elfine to a ball. Mrs Hawk-Monitor: initially far from being gruntled at her son's choice of bride. When sensible, sophisticated Flora Poste is orphaned at nineteen, she decides her only choice is to descend upon relatives in deepest Sussex. At the aptly named Cold Comfort Farm, she meets the doomed Starkadders: But Flora loves nothing better than to organize other people.
Armed with common sense and a strong will, she resolves to take each of the family in hand. A hilarious and merciless parody of rural melodramas, Cold Comfort Farm is one of the best-loved comic novels of all time.
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November 23, History. By Stella Gibbons.
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About the Book.
After death duties had been paid and the demands of creditors satisfied, his child was left with an income of one hundred pounds a year, and no property. Flora inherited, however, from her father a strong will and from her mother a slender ankle. The one had not been impaired by always having her own way nor the other by the violent athletic sports in which she had been compelled to take part, but she realized that neither was adequate as an equipment for earning her keep.
She decided, therefore, to stay with a friend, a Mrs. Smiling, at her house in Lambeth until she could decide where to bestow herself and her hundred pounds a year. The death of her parents did not cause Flora much grief, for she had barely known them. They were addicted to travel, and spent only a month or so of each year in England. Flora, from her tenth year, had passed her school holidays at the house of Mrs Smiling's mother; and when Mrs Smiling married, Flora spent them at her friend's house instead.
It was therefore with the feelings of one who returns home that she entered the precincts of Lambeth upon a gloomy afternoon in February, a fortnight after her father's funeral. Mrs Smiling was fortunate in that she had inherited house property in Lambeth before the rents in that district soared to ludicrous heights, following the tide of fashion as it swung away from Mayfair to the other side of the river, and the stone parapets bordering the names became, as a consequence, the sauntering ground of Argentinian women and their bull-terriers.
Her husband she was a widow had owned three houses in Lambeth which he had bequeathed to her. One, in Mouse Place, was the pleasantest of the three, and faced with its shell fanlight the changing Thames: here Mrs Smiling lived, while of the other two, one had been pulled down and a garage perpetrated upon its site, and the third, which was too small and inconvenient for any other purpose, had been made into the Old Diplomacy Club.
The white porcelain geraniums which hung in baskets from the little iron balconies of I.